New Delhi:Now, Pakistan might be missing Mohammed Asif, but if they're playing India, then Shahid Afridi is the man they'll definitely want among their ranks.
He's having a great run this season, he seems to play his best against India and, on his day, he can take the game away from the opposition in a matter of a few balls.
Shahid Afridi says he couldn't sleep after throwing away his wicket versus South Africa in Lahore on Monday costing Pakistan the series. But this was perhaps the only blip in an extraordinary 2007 for the fiery Pathan, his strike rate of almost 185, the best in the world.
Afridi usually reserves his best for the men in blue. And that is certainly a cause for worry for the Indians. Who can forget his blasting 22 runs in an Ashish Nehra over at the Feroze Shah Kotla ground in 2005.
Afridi's most memorable knock against India though would have to be his 45-ball hundred in Kanpur in the same series. It is the fastest by any batsman against India in ODIs.
"A few years ago the US army had conducted an operation in Iraq. It was called Shock and Awe. The war was over before it had started. Today also it was shock and awe. Some awe-inspiring strokes by Shahid Afridi. India just ran into a tornado, a hurricane, a real hurricane," said Navjot Singh Sidhu, cricket expert, at that time.
Afridi stormed his way into the record books early at just 16, becoming the youngest to score an ODI century. He is the only batsman to have scored two one-day centuries in 45 balls or less, including a record 37-ball century. His tally of 234 sixes is second only to Sanath Jayasuriya in ODIs.
And he has more to offer, Afridi's leg-spin has baffled many batsmen over the years, including Sourav Ganguly in the 2005 Bangalore Test, the last time Pakistanis toured India.
So, some challenge for MS Dhoni when it comes to hitting the ball out of the park. But, that's not the only front where the dashing Afridi will be competing with Mahi. The Pathan's looks and locks have the potential to make as many headlines as his feats with the bat.